University of Maine System Chancellor James Page speaks during a forum at the Orono campus discussing the budget cuts in this April 2014 file photo.

University of Maine System needs to tout its worth if it wants more money

on Sept. 20, 2014, at 12:32 p.m.
The University of Maine System likely needs more financial support from the state, especially as the seven-campus system has not raised tuition for three years. The problem with requesting additional state funds, however, is that the system has chronically done a poor job of convincing the public — and lawmakers, …
Maine Governor Paul LePage's name tag sits unused on a table at an Environmental and Energy Technology Council of Maine forum at Hannaford Hall in Portland on Friday morning.

Word search in the race for governor: Waiting to hear about what really matters in Maine

on Sept. 19, 2014, at 10:29 a.m.
We’ll leave it to a psychologist to determine what it means that the most frequently used word in ads for Eliot Cutler, independent candidate for governor, is “I,” while the campaign for Paul LePage refers to the Republican governor in the third person. The more interesting finding from a BDN …
Construction crews work on sidewalks in West Market Square in downtown Bangor on Wednesday, Sept. 10.

Coupons to car washes: How Bangor can ease businesses’ construction-induced pain

on Sept. 18, 2014, at 9:11 a.m.
Construction in the heart of downtown Bangor has meant dusty environs, torn-up sidewalks, diverted traffic and the appearance of an imposing construction scene for much of the spring and summer. The result for a number of businesses in the affected area has been a dropoff in customer traffic. There’s little …
Gov. Paul LePage addresses concerned older Maine residents at Ellen Leach Home on Sept. 3 in Brewer.

Rewards at the top, cuts at the bottom: The Marie Antoinette approach to governing

on Sept. 17, 2014, at 12:27 p.m.
It is no secret that top government jobs pay less than comparable ones in the private sector and that this sometimes makes it hard to recruit top-notch people to fill high-level government jobs. But giving one group of political appointees, some of whom have already worked in state government for …
Gubernatorial candidate Mike Michaud unveiled a 10-point healthcare plan in Portland on Monday which includes lowering costs by expanding Medicaid.

Building a healthy Maine: Michaud plan calls for comprehensive approach

on Sept. 16, 2014, at 11:44 a.m.
A 10-point health care plan unveiled this week by Rep. Mike Michaud sets the right priorities by taking a holistic view of health and medical care. It aims to integrate health and wellness with education, workforce development, law enforcement and other areas of government. On a more tangible level, it …
People play Texas Hold'em at the Hollywood Casino in Bangor.

Before Maine needs a new casino, it needs a casino strategy

on Sept. 14, 2014, at 5:51 a.m.
What will determine whether Maine becomes home to a third casino? At the moment, it could be the determination of a major gaming interest pitching a casino as an economic windfall for a town or city. That determination would be subject, on a case-by-case basis, to the will of lawmakers …
Pictured is an aerial view of the construction of The Grove, a student-housing complex in Orono built in 2012.

What it takes to build a better college town in Orono

on Sept. 12, 2014, at 12:57 p.m.
College communities often navigate a tenuous balance between welcoming students and loathing them, and residents of college town neighborhoods experience this tension most acutely. In Orono, home to the University of Maine, the tension is heightened by disturbing demographic numbers. For one, the town’s population of families is declining faster …
A member of the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife's bear study crew holds a hand near the paw of "Big John," a 432-pound black bear that was snared and weighed on June 17, 2014.

An interaction takes two: An argument in the bear hunt debate that falls flat

on Sept. 11, 2014, at 11:41 a.m.
The November ballot measure that would outlaw the use of bait, hounds and traps when bear hunting has fast become perhaps the most heated and emotionally charged electoral contest of the season. It also has become a campaign subject to low-quality arguments that don’t pass the straight-face test. Case in …
A member loyal to the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) waves an ISIL flag in Raqqa June 29, 2014.

Sept. 11 remembered: What has changed — and remained the same

on Sept. 10, 2014, at 3:41 p.m.
As we mark the 13th anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon, it is remarkable how much has changed in the world and, yet, how much remains the same. While there has not been a subsequent terrorist attack in the U.S., extremist Muslim factions …
Sen. Geoffrey Gratwick, D-Bangor talks to a resident of a Third Street home in Bangor on Sept. 9.

The ‘brain guy’ gaffe

on Sept. 10, 2014, at 8 a.m.
A video circulating this week shows state Sen. Geoff Gratwick, a doctor from Bangor, saying Mike Michaud is “not a brain guy.” The video is heavily edited — we don’t know what was said by the man doing the videoing that prompted Gratwick’s comments — and pushed by the Maine …
Lab supervisor Aileen Jenkins, right, preps Jim O'Connor's arm to collect platelets from his blood at Children's Hospital Dec. 11, 2013 in Los Angeles.

Let gay men give blood

on Sept. 09, 2014, at 1:47 p.m.
In the United States, if a man has had sex with another man at least once since 1977, he is banned for life from giving blood. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has had some form of this “gay blood ban” since 1983, when the risk of transmitting HIV through …
Ravens running back Ray Rice and his wife Janay made statements to the news media May 5, 2014, at the Under Armour Performance Center in Owings Mills, Md, regarding his assault charge for knocking her unconscious in a New Jersey casino.  On Monday, Sept. 9, 2014, Rice was let go from the Baltimore Ravens after a video surfaced from TMZ showing the incident.

Why did it take a video? Domestic violence is wrong, whether we see it or not

on Sept. 09, 2014, at 11:56 a.m.
The most heart-wrenching part of Monday’s publication of the video of NFL player Ray Rice’s violent assault of his fiancee wasn’t the stomach-churning punch that knocked her unconscious. It is that it took this horrific visual evidence for the league and Rice’s team, the Baltimore Ravens, to finally punish Rice …
Residents and protesters attend a town hall meeting to discuss the processing of undocumented immigrants in Murrieta, California, on July 2, 2014. Dozens more Central Americans caught sneaking into the United States were shipped quietly to California for processing by immigration officials on Wednesday, a day after protesters blocked bus loads of migrant families bound for the Murrieta Border Patrol station.

Stoking illegal immigrant fears might turn out votes, but it’s self-defeating for Maine’s future

on Sept. 08, 2014, at 1:33 p.m.
Attacking people who are the “other” is one of the oldest rallying cries. Building fear of minorities — racial and religious — has been the foundation of nationalist movements and the cause of wars for centuries. It is also a common campaign theme. Fear, after all, is a great motivator. …
A police officer looks on near the site of the train wreckage in Lac Megantic, in this July 2013 file photo.

Rail safety needs to stay on track

on Sept. 07, 2014, at 12:04 p.m.
It is a common story: A company cut corners to save money, regulators were lax in their oversight, and no one paid attention until there was a tragedy. This time, this was the story behind the train derailment in Lac-Megantic, Quebec, which killed 47 people last year. This shows safety …
NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell speaks during a news conference ahead of the Super Bowl, in New York January 31, 2014.

Tackling domestic violence: NFL still on the sidelines

on Sept. 05, 2014, at 11:19 a.m.
The National Football League is taking a tougher stance against domestic violence with a simple statement: “domestic violence and sexual assault are wrong. They are illegal. They have no place in the NFL and are unacceptable in any way, under any circumstances.” This sets the right tone for a sport …
Former Sen. Olympia Snowe at a recent Fortune Magazine’ Most Powerful Women Summit.

Why women tend not to run for political office — and why it matters for Maine

on Sept. 04, 2014, at 10:58 a.m.
Women tend to be more conservative money managers, and they tend to think twice — or at least more than men — before engaging in risky behaviors such as criminal activity, smoking and drug use. Not only are women generally more risk-averse than their male counterparts, gender differences are apparent …
This handout image from a Pakistan military shows a medium range ballistic missile Hatf V (Ghauri) being fired during a test at an undisclosed location in Pakistan in this November 2012 file photo.

5 questions to answer before building a missile site in Maine

on Sept. 03, 2014, at 2:30 p.m.
Will western Maine become home to the country’s newest missile defense site? The Missile Defense Agency, at the behest of Congress, is considering it. It recently held public hearings in Rangeley and Farmington to hear from Maine residents about the potential Continental United Interceptor Site, which would be located at …
Jay Hughes of Brewer holds his three-year-old son Logan while he was getting vaccinated for H1N1 at the Bangor Civic Center on Nov. 4, 2009.

Assessing risk: Why you should get your kids vaccinated

on Sept. 02, 2014, at 11:46 a.m.
Americans are really bad at assessing risk. Many, for example, fear flying but don’t give a second thought to driving to the airport — even though the risk is greater of dying in a car crash than an airplane. And parents fear stranger abductions, even though it’s more likely children …
Inmates at Maine State Prison posed for Biddeford photographer Trent Bell. His show “Reflect: Convicts letters to their younger shelves” opened last winter at Engine in Biddeford.

More drug offenders could be released from prison, and why it should spur wider changes

on Sept. 01, 2014, at 12:32 p.m.
Maine and the nation will have about a year to figure out how best to prepare for a potential increase in drug trafficking offenders being released from federal prison. Federal and local agencies should not just ask what they can do to accommodate the increase and ensure inmates get basic …
A comment book sits in front of the Maine Labor history Mural in the atrium of the Maine State Museum.

Labor Day 2014

on Aug. 31, 2014, at 2:45 p.m.
This newspaper recorded the events of Labor Day 1904 with unusual enthusiasm, describing a parade of more than 2,000 union members in Bangor as “filled with good-fellowship and triumph … a potent example typified in thousands of silent, stalwart men, of the strength and force and dignity which labor organization …
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